A long-established conveyancing firm has gone into administration after reported debts of more than £800,000.
After failing to find a buyer Gateshead-based Swinburne and Jackson LLP, which has been running for over 150 years, had to close all five of its regional offices and make 50 people redundant.
Administrators Gordon Goldie and Matthew Higgins from Tait Walker had to be called in on Monday.
Mr Goldie said: “It is a tragedy that a firm that has been going as long as this has to close. It is indicative of the state of the legal industry at the moment.”
Accounts filed with Companies House show Swinburne and Jackson owed £674,866 to creditors, and £125,365 in loans.
The Solicitor’s Regulation Authority is assisting the administrators in conducting a formal wind-down and clients are advised that their case files are being transferred to solicitors across the region, who will contact them in due course.